India‘s most dependable batsman, Cheteshwar Pujara conceded that the Indian top-order should have batted better on day one of the first Test against Australia in Adelaide. He scored his 16th Test century and first in Australia helped India recover to 250/9 at stumps after they had been reduced to 127/6 at one stage.
During the post-day press conference, Pujara said, “We should have batted better but they also bowled well in the first two sessions. I knew that I had to stay patient and wait for the loose balls. The way they bowled, they bowled in the right areas. I also felt that our top order should have batted better but they will learn from the mistakes. Hopefully, we will bat well in the second innings. As far as my innings is concerned, I had prepared well and overall I have the experience of first-class and Test cricket and that came in handy today.”
Pujara along with R Ashwin and Ishant Sharma built strong partnerships for the seventh and the eight wickets, which made the Australian pacers tired. After the wickets of Ashwin and Ishant, Pujara opened up and played a few more shots to take India to what the batsman ascertained to be a competitive total.
Describing the latter part of his innings, Pujara said, “It has to be different because when you are batting with the tail, you never know how long can they bat. You have to take your chances but you can’t do the same when you are batting with a (top order) batsman. I was set, so I could play my shots. I was a bit disappointed but I had to take that single because only last two balls were left and I wanted to be on strike. I took the chance but Pat Cummins fielded brilliantly.”
Pujara also feels that the visitors have reached a decent amount of runs on the board in the first innings, considering the conditions. He said Ashwin’s bowling will also come into play as it’s not an easy wicket to bat on.
When asked about the sixes he smashed during his 90s and after scoring the century as he is not known to play such shots, Cheteshwar said, “To be honest, when I was preparing back home, I was working on a few shots and that was one of them. I wasn’t surprised that I hit it for a six because I had worked on it back home. I had to obviously bat for two sessions to realize that these are the shots I could play and there were some shots which I had to avoid.”